The most frequently asked question we get lately is: “When do you leave?” Or, “Have you set a date?”
The short answer to the question is: “We don’t know, but as soon as we and the boat are ready and the weather is right!” And: “Hopefully by early-November”
Here’s the better answer to that question:
Our plan for months now has been to have ourselves and the boat ready by the end of October or early- November. However, there are three main factors determining our actual departure date:
- Checklists complete – we have been working on a massive list of TO DO items that until recently seems to continuously grow. However, the list is finally shrinking. We have a final list of “must be done before departure” items. These are things that must be done before we can leave. Things like:
- All financial matters in order.
- Everything requiring us to be here in person completed. For example: my driver’s license needs renewing.
- All personal items we’re leaving behind need to be put in storage or with family or friends.
- New tracking map ready on the web site. So you’ll be able to follow us on our travels.
- And so on…
- Tahina Readiness – All systems ready and tested on Tahina. We can’t leave if the boat is not ready for the long trip to Bermuda, and then down to the Caribbean. We have a lot of new systems on board that have to be thoroughly tested. And, in general the ship has to be thoroughly prepared to go with all main systems in a state of readiness. We have a passage preparation check list for this. Things like all provisions on board, spares on board, all safety systems checked, communications tested, passports on board, etc.
- Weather – You never rush a departure on a long passage. You leave when the conditions are right. We first had to wait until the end of hurricane season (according to our boat’s insurance, that is October 31). If there are any hurricanes out there, we’ll probably delay a bit. Our first passage will be to Bermuda which should take about 3 to 4 days on Tahina. Once we have everything else ready, it may take several days before we get a good 3-4 day forecast along our route to Bermuda.
While we really would like to get the trip started, we don’t have a specific date set for arriving in the Caribbean. The incentive is strong to leave (we are eager to be in those warm Caribbean waters!), but we have to be prudent sailors and make sure we have a proper state of readiness and the weather is good.